Tag Archives: Artist Residency

AMBER ROBLES-GORDON’s series “Place of Breath and Birth” created in her birth country of Puerto Rico

16 Jul

 

Place of Breath and Birth

Series, Collage, 2020

Botánica del Amor, Autorreflexión y Espiritualidad, 18 x 24, 2020

Botánica del Amor, Autorreflexión y Espiritualidad, 18 x 24, 2020

Place of Breath and Birth

Solo Exhibition at Universidad del Sagrado Corazón, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Background:

As my first opportunity to exhibit in the Caribbean and to deepen my relationship with my birthplace, San Juan, Puerto Rico – la Isla del Encanto (the enchanted island) – I have titled this solo exhibition at Galleria de Arte, Universidad del Sagrado Corazón in Santurce, Puerto Rico, Place of Breath and Birth. My artwork is about my personal narrative and the intersections of womanhood, patriarchy, hybridism, and Americanism. My intention is to further contextualize my narrative and artwork within the political, socioeconomic, and environmental threads that define and are often in my opinion used to control, alienate and or mistreat Puerto Ricans in generally and Afro-Puerto Ricans in particular.

The intention of this exhibition is to empower my five-year-old self. To give her the strength to fight for herself, her language and culture. I was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico and raised in Arlington, Virginia. My first language was Spanish, yet at about five years old, I came home one day and told my mother: “I was not speaking Spanish anymore”. From then on, I responded to my Spanish/English speaking mother in English only. Later, I came to understand that I had surrendered my Spanish tongue—a critical part of my cultural identity— so that I could “fit” a version of myself that could possibly coincide with the prescribed box that others had for a brown-skinned girl such as myself.  Although in time, the name calling ceased, however, the micro-aggressions, insensitive questions, assumptions, and judgments about my brownness lingered. Throughout this life, time-after-time, I have had to choose to identify with my brownness/blackness over the other cultural ties that bind other Spanish speaking people with their culture.

My Caribbean family—with roots in Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands, and Antigua— has long been impacted and splintered, by the search or pursuit of education, better income, and greener pastures. As with all achievement, there are gains and losses. The fruit includes a well-educated family with greater exposure to the world and economic and social opportunities. Yet, the primary sacrifice is our distance from the thickened knotted roots of Caribbean Black and Latino heritage and culture that living at home might have provided. – AMBER ROBLES-GORDON, 2020

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Visiting Puerto Rico:

In preparation for this exhibit, my mother and I spent two weeks in September 2019 Puerto Rico. My mother was returning to her childhood home and I was visiting for the first time as an adult. Since then, I have returned to PR to give an artist talk as part of Sagrado de Corazon’s visiting art program and to live in PR for extended period to produce the artwork for this exhibition.  Due to the impact of continuing earthquakes in Puerto Rico from 2019 unward and the COVID 19 epidemic, the format and focus of this artwork has shifted. On July 10, 2020, Place of Breath and Birth will be featured online by the Galleria de Arte, Universidad del Sagrado Corazón on its website at https://www.sagrado.edu/visitingartist/. Additionally, please check out the interview with myself and Norma Vila, Directora de la Galería de Sagrado at https://insagrado.sagrado.edu/las-recientes-iniciativas-de-la-galeria-de-sagrado/?fbclid=IwAR3omEVgPUlcm67lRRBbaliuhimPu6GK-PwK4toQS7CNH0y5IxsidHs9kUw to find out additional details about the residency and my experiences in Puerto Rico.

The Artwork:

Upon its completion, Place of Breath and Birth, will include ten (10) mix-media collages. This digital exhibit includes the first four collage works of the series. Included in this virtual exhibition are the following works: Botánica del Amor, Autorreflexión y Espiritualidad (Botany of Love, Self-reflection and Spirituality), La Island del Encanto (The Island of Enchantment), and Tendedero, Comunidad y Energía Eterna (Clothesline, Community and Eternal Energy). Each collage measures 18 X 24 inches and is made of acrylic paint, magazine paper, permanent ink line drawings, fabric, and other mixed media items.

A foundational symbology of this body of work is the Fiscus Elastica commonly known as the Rubber Tree, rubber fig or rubber plant.  I was introduced to the Rubber Tree while in Puerto Rico on the grounds of the Universidad de Sagrado de Corazón (University of the Sacred Heart) campus. Among its extensive botanical collection of indigenous plants of Puerto Rico; I found a large banyan tree whose broad canopy sheltered smaller versions of itself growing at its feet. This tree appeared to be a literal fusion of past, present and future state of creation or sustaining an ecosystem. In La Isla del Encanto (pictured below) and throughout this series are abstracted representations of the rubber tree– an entanglement of strong roots – as a example of its resiliency this tree most recently stood-fast to its native soil while 155 mph winds that battered the campus.

Isla del Encanta, 18 x 24, 2020

Isla del Encanta, 18 x 24, 2020

The second most important symbolic layer of the work are the depictions and interpretations of the transitions of day to night and night to day. I intentionally choose a studio and apartment on the third floor in Puerto Nuevo with three-dimensional exposure to light. I then surrounded myself with plants to create an internal garden a reflection of the thousands of “porch gardens” featured throughout PR neighborhoods. From this perch, I could see the changing environment as the light increased or waned and how the varying aspects of weather altered each day. Depending on where I stood, and the time of day, I had a virtual window into the varying socioeconomics aspects of diversity of the island. The combination of the verdant and vibrant nature of the island landscape, my internal garden and the third floor weather allowed for the feeling of creating an atmosphere.

As I progressed through researching, photographing, living and ultimately creating after the beginning of COVID 19 quarantine the cylinder abstracted rubber tree forms expanded to circular ecospheres to convey a spiritual and ethereal connections to and within my immediate environment. Throughout some of the artworks I am a figure, a witness to the beauty and complexity of the Puerto Rican landscape – tropical jungle, 1,000 of miles of carreteras, the co-mingling and isolation of three major ethnic/racial groups – Taino, the Spanish and Africans, the strangle hold of the United States and the impact of the Caribbean Sea, with its threat of hurricanes, scorching summer heat and lush landscape.

Ultimately, I hope this narrative and artwork gives voice to others who walk in brownness—who breathe within a female form, and or—- who do not quite fit the norms…yet are Bold and Proud. – AMBER ROBLES-GORDON, 2020

Tendedero, Comunidad y Energía Eterna, 18 x 24, 2020

Tendedero, Comunidad y Energía Eterna, 18 x 24, 2020

Elemental: Tierra, Aire, Agua, Fuego, 18 x 24, 2020

Elemental: Tierra, Aire, Agua, Fuego, 18 x 24, 2020

Morton Fine Art
52 O St NW #302
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 628-2787 (call or text)
mortonfineart@gmail.com

AMBER ROBLES-GORDON exhibiting at Sagrado University in Puerto Rico

13 Jul

Galería de Arte de la Universidad del Sagrado Corazón

LUGAR DE ALIENTO Y NACIMIENTO

Proyecto por nuestra Artista Visitante Amber Robles Gordon

En Sagrado, el bienestar de nuestra comunidad es lo primero. Continuamos monitoreando el desarrollo de eventos relacionados con la propagación mundial del coronavirus (COVID-19). Como medida de precaución, Sagrado está implementando la práctica del distanciamiento social. Por lo tanto, la Galería de Arte permanecerá cerrada hasta nuevo aviso.

A través de los años, hemos creado una comunidad que se une para apreciar diferentes experiencias estéticas. Queremos continuar esto sin poner en riesgo a nuestros visitantes. Por lo tanto, estamos poniendo a disposición esta experiencia en línea. Entre las nuevas ofertas compartimos el trabajo de Amber Robles Gordon, quien fue nuestra artista visitante durante el semestre de otoño y, a partir de esa experiencia, ha creado nuevas obras bajo el título “Un lugar de aliento y nacimiento”.

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Amber Robles-Gordon, es una artista visual de medios mixtos. Conocida por recontextualizar materiales no tradicionales, sus ensamblajes, grandes esculturas, instalaciones y obras de arte públicas, para enfatizar la esencialidad de la espiritualidad y la temporalidad dentro de la vida.

Impulsada por la necesidad de construir su propio camino distintivo, innovar y desafiar las normas sociales, su obra de arte es poco convencional y no formulada. Sus creaciones son representativas de sus experiencias personales y las paradojas dentro del desequilibrio de las energías masculinas y femeninas con nuestra sociedad. En última instancia, la intención es examinar los paralelos entre cómo la humanidad percibe sus mayores recursos, hombres y mujeres versus cómo tratamos nuestras posesiones y medio ambiente.

“Tuve la suerte de ser la artista visitante de la Galería de Arte de la Universidad Sagrado Corazón, durante este año académico. Esta oportunidad me permitiría conocer el lugar donde por primera vez respiré. Luego de mis dos visitas a Puerto Rico a finales del 2019, decidí a comienzos del 2020 alquilar un apartamento en Puerto Nuevo para comenzar a producir la serie “A Place of Breath and Birth”, pautada para presentarse al final del año académico (abril de 2020) en la Galería. Debido a los terremotos persistentes, y el riesgo que representan para la comunidad Sagrado, mi exhibición se vio pospuesta, más tarde con el inicio de la pandemia COVID-19, todo a nivel mundial se alteró y tuve que regresar a Washington D.C. Las nuevas obras producidas bajo el título Un lugar de aliento y nacimiento se trasladaron a mi plataforma en línea y formarán parte de mi exhibición individual titulada Secession, a presentarse en el Katzen Art Center de la American University. (webpage https://www.amberroblesgordon.com/place-of-breath-and-birth-exhibition-puerto-rico).

Esta sería mi primera oportunidad de exhibir en el Caribe y profundizar mi relación con mi lugar de nacimiento, Puerto Rico, (la Isla del Encanto).

Por eso había titulado la exposición, Lugar de aliento y nacimiento. Comparto con ustedes unas palabras de mi declaración de artista, la que dio origen a esta serie que todavía está ardiendo y guiando mi descubrimiento por mis orígenes todos los días.

La intención de la propuesta para una exposición individual en P.R. fue empoderar a mi yo de cinco años. Para darle la fuerza para luchar por ella misma y su lenguaje. Nací en San Juan, Puerto Rico y crecí en Arlington, Virginia. Mi primer idioma era el español, pero a los cinco años llegué un día de la escuela y le dije a mi madre: “ya no hablaré en español”. A partir de entonces, sólo respondí a mi madre que habla español e inglés en inglés. Más tarde, llegué a comprender que entregué mi lengua española, una parte crítica de mi identidad cultural, para poder “adaptarme”; a una versión de mí misma que posiblemente podría coincidir con “el molde prescrito”; que otros tenían para una niña de piel morena como yo. En ese momento, mi familia y yo vivíamos en una zona de los EE. UU. donde había pocas personas que se parecían a mí y hablaran español. Aunque con el tiempo, los insultos cesaron, las micro-agresiones, preguntas insensibles, suposiciones y juicios persistieron. A lo largo de esta vida, una y otra vez, he tenido que elegir identificarme con mi color marrón / negrura sobre los otros lazos culturales que unen a otras personas de habla hispana con su cultura. Aunque, mi narrativa personal es el foco principal de estas obras de arte, continuaré contextualizando la misma dentro de los hilos políticos, socioeconómicos y ambientales que definen y a menudo se utilizan para controlar, alienar o maltratar a los puertorriqueños en general y a los afro- puertorriqueños en particular. Además, mi obra de arte trata sobre las intersecciones de la feminidad, el patriarcado, el hibridismo y el americanismo. En última instancia, espero que esta narrativa y esta obra de arte den voz a otros que caminan en tonos marrones, que respiran dentro de una forma femenina y que no se ajustan a las normas … pero son audaces y orgullosos.
Isla de Encanta

Isla Del Encanta 18 x 24 2020

Haz un click sobre las imágenes para ver una versión más grande.

Elemental_ tierra aire agua fuego

Elemental: Tierra, Aire, Agua y Fuego 18 x 24 2020

Más tarde, llegué a comprender que entregué mi lengua española, una parte crítica de mi identidad cultural, para poder “adaptarme” a una versión de mí mismo que posiblemente podría coincidir con la caja prescrita que otros tenían para una niña de piel morena como yo.

En ese momento, vivíamos en el continente de los EE. UU., Y vivíamos en un área donde había pocas personas que se parecían a mí y hablaban español. Aunque con el tiempo, los insultos cesaron; Las micro-agresiones, preguntas insensibles, suposiciones y juicios persistieron. A lo largo de esta vida, una y otra vez, he tenido que elegir identificarme con mi color marrón / negrura sobre los otros lazos culturales que unen a otras personas de habla hispana con su cultura.

Tendederos Communidad Energia Eterna

Tendedero Comunidad y Energía Eterna 18 x 24 2020

Aunque, mi narrativa personal será el foco principal de estas obras de arte; Continuaré contextualizando la obra de arte dentro de los hilos políticos, socioeconómicos y ambientales que definen y a menudo se utilizan para controlar, alienar o maltratar a los puertorriqueños en general y a los afro-puertorriqueños en particular. Además, mi obra de arte trata sobre las intersecciones de la feminidad, el patriarcado, el hibridismo y el americanismo. En última instancia, espero que esta narrativa y esta obra de arte den voz a otros que caminan en tonos marrones, que respiran dentro de una forma femenina y que no se ajustan a las normas … pero son audaces y orgullosos.

Botanica del Amor Autorreflexion y Espiritualidad

Botánica del Amor, Autoreflexión y Espiritualidad 18 x 24 2020

KATHERINE MANN Artist-in-Residence program at Shenandoah National Park

15 Aug

SNP selects Katherine Mann for Artist-in-Residence program

Shenandoah National ParkShenandoah National Park has tapped Katherine Mann as the August Artist-in-Residence.

In her sweeping abstract paintings, Mann merges traditional Chinese and Japanese ink painting techniques with an approach rooted in Western abstractionism. Mann received her Bachelor of Arts from Brown University and Master of Fine Arts from Maryland Institute College for the Art. She has attended many other residencies including at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.

Mann’s residency will run through August 19, 2019. Park visitors are invited to join Mann for painting demonstrations on Thursday, August 15 between 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. at Skyland (mile 41.7 and 42.5 on Skyline Drive) on the outside terrace located between the registration office and dining room. On Sunday, August 18, the demonstration will be at the Dickey Ridge Visitor Center (mile 4.6 on Skyline Drive) between 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. The public presentations are free and suitable for visitors of all ages, however, there is a $30-per-vehicle entrance fee to the park which is good for seven days or use a valid Annual or Lifetime Pass.

Shenandoah National Park is a jewel among National Park Service sites and offers a distinctive array of natural, cultural, and recreational opportunities for visitors. The Artist-in-Residence program is established in numerous National Park Service sites to inspire artists to create and share art that not only motivates and encourages millions of people to visit and explore, but also helps build awareness and develop stewardship of these beautiful public lands.

“We are pleased to select an abstract painter for our Artist-in Residence Program,” Superintendent Jennifer Flynn said. “We look forward to the unique images she will create that are inspired by the surrounding beauty of Shenandoah National Park”.

Shenandoah’s Artist-in-Residence program is supported by a generous donation from the Shenandoah National Park Trust.

“Donors to the Shenandoah National Park Trust are proud to fund programs like Artist-in-Residence, which explore new opportunities to connect people with this remarkable landscape,” stated Shenandoah National Park Trust President Susan Sherman.

More information about the Artist–in-Residence program can be found on the park’s website at: https://www.nps.gov/shen/getinvolved/supportyourpark/artist-in-residence.htm

 

Available artwork by KATHERINE TZU-LAN MANN

 

Morton Fine Art

52 O St NW #302

Washington, DC 20001

 

http://www.mortonfineart.com

(202) 628-2787

mortonfineart@gmail.com

KESHA BRUCE’s “Sacred Liberation” at Waaw Residency, Saint-Louis, Senegal

18 May

Enjoy these photos of KESHA BRUCE’s opening reception for “Sacred Liberation” during her Waaw Residency in Senegal in May 2018. Among many new sources of inspiration, Kesha’s fascination with the baobab tree became magically obsessive. The artist describes:

The Baobab is the national tree of Senegal. I’d never heard of it until @kasiazudou sent me a picture of one that’s been carbon dated to be more than 6000 years old. I saw my first Baobab on my drive to Saint-Louis. They are absolutely eerie and otherworldly. I later found out they’re both feared and venerated for their magical abilities. I’ve been obsessed ever since.
Almost every tribe has a legend about the Baobab. In ancient times elders and community leaders would hold meetings under the baobabs so that the ancestors and spirits who live in the Baobab would guide them to make wise decisions.
And until recently, Griots, living historians who are keepers of historical records across generations, were buried inside Baobab trees.”

ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY Artist Residency at Arteles Creative Center in Finland

16 Aug

Congratulations to ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY for her participation in the very competitive artist residency program at Arteles Creative Center in Finland!

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Arteles Creative Center in Finland is one of the largest and most international creative residencies in Scandinavia.

Welcoming over 100 selected visual artists/ musicians/ writers/ performance artists/ photographers/ designers / architects per year.
It is an inspiring place to produce original work and collaborate with other energetic and ambitious artists & creative professionals for a concentrated period of time from 1 to 2 months.

Arteles is offering you the possibility to be free to create and to go ‘out of the box’ without having any outside or art world pressure. We encourage experimentation and innovation – and therefore give voice to works that otherwise have nowhere else to be produced or displayed.

Our living and studio spaces are designed to support creative activities and social exchange and we can host 10-12 residents simultaneously.

The center is located in the middle of extraordinary nature of Hämeenkyrö, Finland (European Union Landscape Award in 2009) where you can soak in the fresh air, enjoy the silence, go for wandering walks in the forests, swimming in the many lakes nearby, go skiing and skating at winter time, do hiking and trekking trips in the nearby nature or have daily relaxing in a traditional wood-fire sauna. You can also get to know the fascinating and rich old culture of Finland viewed through Kalevala Epic, full of trolls, witches, myths and its inherent ties with nature.

 

Please click here to view available artwork by internationally renowned artist ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY.

 

Or contact:

Morton Fine Art, 1781 Florida Ave NW, Washington, DC 20009

(202) 628-2787, mortonfineart@gmail.com, http://www.mortonfineart.com